Import and export had increased last year, recording a revenue of MVR 2.6 billion as Import Duty in 2016, stated Maldives Customs Service on Monday.
According to Custom’s official statistics for the previous year, the Maldives had exported goods worth MVR 3.9 billion last year, which is an increase of seven percent from MVR 3.7 billion in 2015.
While the fish products make up the bulk of export goods from the archipelago, the export market was dominated by Thailand with 33 percent, followed by Sri Lanka at 11 percent and the United States at nine percent.
High expenditure for Male-Hulhule bridge
The amount of import goods had also increased last year with MVR 34 billion, which is a 12 percent spike from MVR 31 billion worth of goods imported in 2015.
The highest expenditures last year were for importation of machinery and electronic equipment at MVR 6.8 billion, which accounts for 21 percent of total import.
Customs attributed the jump in import to the increasing amount of machinery and equipment procured for the ongoing development of the China-Maldives Friendship Bridge, which connects capital Male to airport island Hulhule.
According to the statistics, the second highest expenditure was for the importation of food products at MVR 6.4 billion, which is 19 percent of total import. It is followed by importation of oil products at MVR 3.5 billion (11 percent).
The majority of goods were imported from United Arab Emirates (UAE) last year with MVR 5.3 billion, which accounts for 16 percent of total import. Meanwhile, the Maldives had imported goods worth MVR 4.7 billion (14 percent) from Singapore and MVR 4.2 billion (13 percent) from India.
Statistics show that revenue from Import Duty and other fees, including oil products, had spiked by eight percent last year compared to 2015. Import Duty in 2016 was MVR 2.6 billion while 2015 recorded a duty of MVR 2.4 billion.
Meanwhile, the State Budget 2017 projects the revenue from Import Duty this year will also be around MVR 2.6 billion.